Practising ‘safe sex’ in tech

The phrase “practice safe sex” is taking on a whole new meaning in our modern, tech-obsessed world. Security flaws in high-tech interactive app-based sex toy products (known in the industry as teledildonics) are gaining increasing media coverage. Many organisations are campaigning for tighter regulations regarding the development and maintenance of these products. According to one source, just because every gadget can now be connected to the internet, it doesn’t mean they should be. Sex toys like every other electronic device are being pulled into the Internet of Things (IoT) platform but not without complications.

Only last week a data breach within the Cellmate – billed the “world’s first app controlled chastity device”- had consequences for users worldwide. The API that communicates between the app and the lock on physical product was left open without a password, meaning that anyone could take complete control of any user’s device at any given time. This story follows on from other high profile scenarios in 2016 and 2017 where data breaches occurred, allowing extremely sensitive data in to the public domain.

Despite this, there is a clear demand for teledildonics, especially during the coronavirus pandemic where couples are unable to physically be together. App-based sex toys now represent a reasonable portion of the SexTech market but frighteningly, it is a heavily under scrutinised part of the market at present.

With consumers keen to purchase the products, time is of the essence in tackling the issue of cyber security. We’re encouraged to see this issue being addressed by organisations like the Internet of Dongs Project set up to not only establish bridges to the developers of teledildonic devices but also to educate consumers about choosing devices responsibly. However, it takes many voices to make a lot of noise so there is still much work to be done.

With any new product development, undertaking a risk assessment will highlight safety issues you may not have thought of and allows you to demonstrate that you have fulfilled your obligation to sell a safe product.

Testing a product concept during all stages of its development is an important part of the design process too. Prototypes, mock-ups and test rigs, or whatever you wish to call them, enable your design team to evaluate every aspect of a product, including how it is used.

Using feedback derived from tests your design team will create great products which delight the user and make healthy profits for the manufacturing and distributing chain.

Here at Sated Design we can help you with any of the above services and more. If you have an idea for a new Sex Toy and would like a little help making your product a desirable reality, get in touch today – we may just be able to help.



Avoiding DIY Patents

The adult toy industry is notorious for unscrupulously copying great ideas. Both securing effective Intellectual Property Protection (IPP) and taking swift and aggressive action to stomp out copy cats are both crucial to maintaining your competitive edge. IPP legally identifies you as the originator and owner of your idea and gives you exclusive rights to exploit it so it is absolutely critical to your business.

There are a number of ways to protect the intellectual property of your idea. It is recommended that you speak to an IPP expert such as a patent attorney at the right time to select the best forms of protection for your product.

There are many free patent databases that you can use to carry out your own searching, but professional patent searchers and patent attorneys who specialise in such services will almost inevitably find documents that are more relevant than those found by a novice searcher.

A DIY patent is not the best approach and can do more harm than good. It is so important to seek expert legal advice!

Here at Sated Design, many of our clients initially reached out to us because we work so closely with a firm of leading Intellectual Property specialists in our network and are therefore familiar with their methods and requirements. We work with these specialists to protect the IP of your sex toy invention idea by providing descriptions of claims and supporting illustrations of any new IP created. In addition to providing you with reassurance, this may also reduce search and filing fees significantly.

Releasing details of your idea into the public domain without protection may jeopardise the chances of your IPP applications being granted, giving your competitors an opportunity to get the idea to market before you. Our top tip is that if you need to discuss your idea with anyone, such as a supplier, use a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) document to ensure that all parties regard the discussions as confidential.

If you’ve got a new pleasure product idea and require assistance taking it to the point of manufacture, we can provide help at any step of the way.

Contact us today.